Capital City Runners is honored to spotlight Lisa Cox and Mickey Phillips as this month's Random Runners. Please be sure to thank them for sharing their story(s).
CCR: When did you start really running? Why?
LISA: I was on my kindergarten track team, but didn’t start running consistently until I was 15. My PE coach (Mrs. Durkin) noticed that I enjoyed running during PE and asked me to complete the Presidential Sports Fitness award in running, which consisted of running 125 miles in 90 days (a 2 ½ mile maximum daily). In order to make sure I completed it all, I had to run on the top level of our new basketball gym, where 12 laps equaled one mile. Ronald Reagan signed my award – ironically, Mickey Phillips has one signed by him too! I mostly did it because my coach believed in me, but I was hooked after that!
MICKEY: I ran randomly in 2012 and more regularly in 2013. I mountain biked for many years and wanted to try something different. Running was harder for me to do and took less time.
CCR: How has running shaped you since then?
LISA: I can’t imagine not having running in my life now. It’s one of the most freeing activities I have experienced. It calms me and makes me feel strong. I believe it helped me beat heart disease in two ways – I was healthier when my ‘event’ happened, and it was my runner partner and friend who saved my life (Jamie Harris), so running was a big part of that!
MICKEY: I am racing a lot more these days.
CCR: As a child, did you think running would be an important part of your life?
LISA: By the time I was in high-school, I would say I did.
CCR: What is one of your most awesome running memories? i.e. proudest, favorite, most memorable...
LISA: As a young person, being on the first team at Ironton High to allow women to compete on the all-male cross-country team – then becoming the first female to earn a varsity letter in cross country. As an adult, my first marathon in 2006 (Tallahassee Marathon). Also, qualifying for and running the Boston Marathon.
MICKEY: Finishing 22:14 at the 2013 Palace 5k. It is the fastest 5k finish for me so far.
CCR: What is your weak point? Does it haunt you or drive you?
LISA: Getting back to a respectable level of training and speed after heart surgery. I feel I’ll eventually get better but sometimes it’s difficult to accept.
MICKEY: Running downhill. I keep trying it different ways and I'm sure I'll eventually get better at it.
CCR: What do you like to do when you aren’t running? (Do you have a favorite non-running hobby?)
LISA: I enjoy being with my children, Sara & Austin – we have a lot of fun together; but they are teenagers, so they have their own interests,too. I also adopted a sweet boxer, Peanut Butter, and he is great buddies with Mickey’s foster, Sid. Mickey and I have fun being together with Peanut Butter and Sid and we enjoy some down time watching movies and cooking together. I have a new mountain bike and enjoy riding it – I just need to get better at riding.
MICKEY: Mountain Biking, cooking, art
CCR: What do you do to pay your bills?
LISA: I am the Database Administrator at the Florida Dental Association.
MICKEY: Graphic Artist
CCR: If money were no object, what would you love to do?
LISA: I would enjoy doing something that didn’t required being behind a desk. I’d like to travel, preferably doing something that would allow me to incorporate running/biking with traveling – perhaps a sponsored traveling Heart-Disease Running ambassador….lol. I’d like to inspire other heart patients not to be afraid of exercising and leading an active lifestyle.
MICKEY: Visit and photograph active volcanoes.
CCR: What are some of your most recent “reads”?
LISA: I read Runner’s World magazine when time allows & technical stuff for work. I also received 14 Minutes from a friend while I was recuperating from surgery – obviously that is fascinating.
MICKEY: I don't read but I love watching movies.
CCR: Who motivates you, and what inspires you to keep running?
LISA: I definitely am motivated by the Gulf Winds Track Club – I have never lived anywhere else where there is such an active running club. I am glad that Mickey likes to run and it is fun to enjoy that together – he encourages me and I enjoy seeing him improve and being a part of his first experiences with racing and running.
MICKEY: Lisa Cox motivates me. She is always there to get my butt off the couch and go run. Otherwise, I'd have another lazy day. Efficiency is what inspires me to keep running. With every run, I'm trying to move better and be faster.
CCR: What is your idea of the perfect “running” vacation (or weekend)? A non-running vacation?
LISA: I like getting out of town for runs - it’s always nice when you can combine some days off with a race and maybe another event in the town where you are. Mickey and I have enjoyed a few races out of town this past year and that has been fun. Non-running vacations need to include outside activities too (biking, the beach, etc) - something relaxing and a visit with family is very likely.
MICKEY: I really like going out of town and racing, especially festival runs. I love all the food. My non-running trips are usually mountain bike related - North Georgia, Alabama, North Carolina. I love mountains!
CCR: How has Capital City Runners been a positive component of your running career/life-style?
LISA: CCR is very supportive of our club and individually, Lori Abbey, has been very supportive of me with my heart disease and with encouragement on behalf of CCR. I like that I can go in to the shop and the staff is familiar with me and my running style/ goals. My hometown was very small and it reminds me of growing up and how easy it is when people know what you’re all about in order to cater to your needs – this saves time and makes you feel like someone cares – this is very hard to find in the business community these days.
MICKEY: It took a couple pairs but with their knowledge and patience, Capital City Runners helped me find the right shoes for me to run in. It's time for me to get over there and get a new pair now!